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Creating Icons

Creating Icons - Windows has a program you can use to create your own icons. It's called paint and you can find it under start, programs, accessories, then paint. After you open paint you need to configure the workspace to the right size for icons. go to image, attributes, then set the width & height to 32. Be sure to leave the button "pels" selected. (pels is the same as pixels.) Now click o.k. and you'll see a workspace of 32 x 32 pixels, just right for icons but too small to edit so we need to "zoom in" on the workspace. In the paint window you'll see a tool bar on the left. Click on the magnifier then below that select 8x. O.K. now we need a grid box to work in, select view, zoom, and show grid. Next let's enable the thumbnail view we can see how our icon will look as we work. select view, zoom, and show thumbnail. Now your ready to create your master piece! Before you get too far along though there are a few things about the paint program that can be annoying. First of all if you give your icon a back ground, it won't show up after you save your image! to fix this you must "frame" your icon. We do this with the rectangle tool (next to the bottom left on the tool bar) also make sure to choose a color for the "frame" that you are not using in your icon. The frame will disappear from the picture after you save it and so will any of the piece's of your icon that are the same color as the frame! After you finish your icon you can save it in either the .bmp format or the .ico format. If you save it in the .bmp format windows will give the file the look of the traditional bmp icon. If you save it with the ico format the file will take on the look of the icon image in the file.


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By Marvin Somerton